Hate Is a Strong Word
Posted by Phil
GETTING YOUR WISDOM TEETH pulled. Getting ditched by your friends at school or in your cabin. Having your heart ripped out and stomped on by your recent crush. These are definitely situations that you don’t look forward to experiencing. It doesn’t matter if the pain is physical or emotional. We want to avoid it, minimize it, or get rid of it. What is the most painful experience you have had?
Read John 15:18-22. Reflect on verse 18.
What did Jesus say would happen if you follow Him?
Why will the world hate you?
What scares you the most about being persecuted for your faith?
What are some ways you try to avoid persecution?
How can you have hope in the midst of persecution?
Jesus never beat around the bush. He told the disciples straight up what would happen if they followed Him: they would face persecution. When you live a life dedicated to and on fire for Jesus, you can be sure that you will suffer for your faith. The world hates you! (Heartwarming, huh?) It hates you because of whose you are. You see, the world hates Jesus with a passion, and you belong to Him. But He knows what you are going through because He has already experienced it. You can trust Him to give you the strength to endure. Are you looking forward to the pain that following Jesus will bring? Probably not, but you can look forward to the day that Jesus wraps His arms around you and says, “Well done.” Remember: your suffering is only temporary; glory is forever.